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Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means


Find out why Scouts carry out an annual census and what support is available to help complete it

Why we have a census

Scouts carry out an annual census to create a detailed picture of the young people and adults that make up our membership. It's not just about how many members we have, it's our chance to find out about the diversity and make up of Scouting in our communities. Knowing who our members are helps to better inform the services provided to meet the needs of our members.

So it's really important you provide us with the most accurate details possible about Scouting in your community and its members.

The youth census figures also provide information regarding the payment of the national membership fee for youth members and associated membership fees at various levels of the movement.

Getting more help with the census

We have written a guide for each of the main census return types and have also updating our FAQs

You get assistance from the Scout Support Centre by email or you could try Live Chat which can be found on our website.

Please note the Support Centre will be closed from the 23rd December 2023 until the 2nd January 2024

Getting started with the census

If you've never done the census before or want to prepare for it, we suggest you look through the return guides

Census 2024

The next census will take place on in January 2024 and follow the timeline below:

  • Between 6 and 13 December - Census passwords sent out
  • 20 December - Census opens
  • 14 January - Census approvals open
  • 14 February - Census closes all returns must be complete and approved

Please note that local Scouting will have its own deadlines for census to ensure all returns are approved locally ahead of the census closing on 14 February. Please check local deadlines with your relevant District or County Commissioner.


Regular questions that pop up about the census systems, and why we ask some of the questions that we do.

Check out our FAQs

Approving the census

Read through our guide for approvers to learn more about approving census returns.

Census approvals

Tools to support the census

Read through our return guides, and access all the tools you need to gather the information to complete the census from parents, volunteers and young people.

Support and downloads